Written by: Larry “The Nucks IceMan” Johnson
Every season there seems to be a player that comes out of nowhere and surprises with increased production.
Last season there were a number of those but none escalated the climb like Henrik Sedin, minus Brother Daniel for 19 games.
So will Henrik equal or surpass his total from last season or was this a one off?
There were so many players that had career years last season you wonder if they can continue if they remain relatively healthy? One should not forget that the Canucks seem to always end up near the top in man games lost to injuries!
But this is about being optimistic and looking at who can repeat, increase or maybe is in for a step back.
Henrik Sedin – personally, I don’t see why he can’t reach the 100 point total again if for no other reason than Daniel will be on his wing and it’s not unrealistic to surpass last season’s 112.
These are players that are still in the prime of their careers.
Even with Alex Burrows not expecting to start the season, Mikael Samuelsson has more than proven he can add to the magic of the line.
This will also depend if a second or even third line can continue to be a threat so that the opposition does not sit back and key only on them.
Mason Raymond increased his points output by 30 over 2008-09 and looks to top his 53 points from last year. This is a player that should reach 30 goals and with second line power-play time there is no reason for him not to add another 10-15 points.
This will happen only if he can be more consistent and lessen those long droughts of non-production.
Ryan Kesler (75) and Alex Burrows (67) increase of 16 points each, is just about the top for them and I don’t see much more than five to eight for Kesler and a decrease for Burrows. There has been no specific time given for the amount of time Burrows will miss from the start of the season.With Mikael Samuelsson most likely starting on wing with the Sedins, that could jump start his season and 10 more points would not be out of the realm.
One of these seasons Alex Edler is going to prove that the first play-off game against the LA Kings was no fluke and his points will match that increased confidence and play. I still don’t like his softness but I can live with that if his overall offensive point production increases more than a few points.
Edler has the potential that management has been patiently waiting for since 2006-07, to be a 55 – 60 point a year D-man. But this will really depend on his amount of power play time.
With Sami Salo out at the beginning of the season and the unknown of Kevin Bieksa, that would leave only Christian Ehrhoff and Dan Hamhuis as the other possible point men.
With only Bieksa being a right hand shot that means a few of these left hand shots will play their opposite sides.
I realize there are others that will increase their point totals this season like new comers Dan Hamhuis and possibly Keith Ballard but I will look at that in a different article.
Filed under: Opinion